Jump to content


Photo

Wanted : Terror Mission Guide


  • Please log in to reply
43 replies to this topic

#1 pcx

pcx

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 10 posts

Posted 01 June 2005 - 01:10 AM

Hi all,

I'm playing veteran difficulty.

And all this damn terror missions (specifically sectoid/cyberdisc) are killing me.

They have mad vision, mad reaction shots, mad camping skills.

Short of arming my men full of High Explosives and bombing the heck outta every square tile. Is there a strategy to comb/clear the place ?

Smokes are not helping me out (other than for exiting SkyRanger), tends to REDUCE my visibility more than the aliens. Cuz all the smoke from HE autocannon or heavycannon killed me in one of my missions. Since I'm not good enuff to play no reload, I tried it many times, in the end I just gave up and aborted the mission. (At least I didnt ignore the terror mission)

When doing normal maps my limit skills work sufficiently to clear it without much problems.

It's the damn buildings and all the corners, u bomb the building, the smoke blinds you. Then the alien shoots thru the holes YOU created... argh! :Brickwall:

Ok, so please please help me out. :(

#2 NKF

NKF

    Commander

  • [Global Moderators]
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4798 posts

Posted 01 June 2005 - 02:38 AM

Where to start? I'll just toss random ideas down as they come to me:

Terror sites are actually no different from most other missions, it's just the map and the more scattered arrangement of enemies that makes things more interesting (and lack of 'base' for the aliens as well (I mean there's no UFO))

First and foremost: Ignore the civilians. Well no, you're not there to ignore them, per se, but concentrate more on your soldiers than the civilians. You won't be able to save any of them if you can't save yourself.

Use cover. Even if it's just a wood fence - get behind it, or a freshly deployed smoke grenade.

Take your time. Decide when you should move slowly and conserve your TUs (You attract a heck of a lot of reaction fire when your TUs are really low), or when to move quickly.

For cover purposes: Consider making entrances through walls and fences instead of going round to the gate or the front door.

Never get any soldiers isolated for long periods. Always try to maintain some form of visible contact with the soldier so that you can provide long range fire support.

Move along the edges of the maps so that you only have to worry about enemies approaching you from one direction rather than getting you surrounded. Or more to the point, get most of your soldiers to the end of the map - preferably at the end of a field or a road or one corner of the map.

Use the good old scout and sniper fireteam trick in conjunction with the above if possible. Have someone, preferably a tank, scout ahead, and then use the soldiers at the edge of the map open fire. Never get the scout that spots an alien to open fire unless they're out of the aliens sight (i.e. 21 tiles away from alien or less if there's a smoke cloud between you) - or if there's no other option or if your shot is definitely not going to miss. Also get the scout to move slowly and try not to use most of your TUs. As mentioned elsewhere, the less TUs you have, the easier you'll attract reaction fire.

If the snipers cannot hit their target, reposition them and have the scout pull back. An alien that hasn't seen you won't be able to shoot at you - however if you are within visible range when you end the turn, they will shoot you - so hide.

If you use smoke, remember that it's effects work both ways. Also remember that smoke clouds generated by your explosives are NOT thick enough to provide adequate cover - while your smoke grenade clouds do. So try not to rely too much on secondary smoke effects that do not come from a smoke grenade for anything but moderate cover.

Other points to consider when using smoke grenades: Aliens are not affected by the lighting conditions, and will always be able to see in a cone 20 tiles ahead of them as if it were always daylight. You can do this only during the day. Also, smoke grenades work better when placed between you and the target, not on you or on the target. And the most important thing to remember: Smoke grenades work the best within the first 3 turns after they've been deployed as that's when they're thickest. Every turn after that, the aliens can see 1 tile further into the smoke until it dissapates - even if it looks like a larger cloud, they can indeed see further into it.

If you've just bombed an area and getting blinded by the smoke, run for cover but also remember to retreat and not run into unknown territory.

---


Anti cyberdisc weapons include high power weapons like the cannon tank and the Heavy Cannon and laser weapons (any - including the laser pistol). Until you get the laser rifle or heavy laser, Cyberdiscs are best destroyed with high explosives - and they can also be crippled rather severely with proximity mines. Large rockets are totally awesome against them - often resulting in 1 shot kills. Not small - LARGE. Also avoid using tank rockets. On veteran, I'd imagine you'd need 2 or 3 rockets on average to destroy just 1 cyberdisc (on superhuman it's close to 3 - 4), I'd save it for clusters of sectoids. You can only carry 8 rockets per tank, and if you do the math, you'll see that it's just not practical. So stick with large rockets, high explosives or high powered AP shells and lasers.

If you're fighting Chryssalids - do not use explosives except the really strong varieties such as the large rocket and high explosive (and later blaster bomb). Proximity mines are useful for mildly crippling them and surprising them. If you're using plain pistols/rifles - do not even think of using them to kill chryssalids. They take too long - but with reaction fire you can deter a chryssalid from attacking with them, if only temporarily. The heavy cannon is most effective against it - but only with AP shells. It takes twice as many HE shells as AP shells to kill a chryssalid - much more with the Autocannon, but even with that AP shells do better than HE shells.

Reapers are grenade fodder.

---

How about run training 'simulations' on a terror site for a bit of practice? i.e. save a game just as a terror site appears and before you launch the Skyranger. Then you can keep launching a mission against the terror site until you get the hang of it. Use separate save slots so that you can save different equipment configurations that you might like to try out. If you keep at it, you'll eventually get the hang of it - I do it all the time after I haven't played the game in a while just to get back up to speed.

- NKF
Lord High Generalissimo Ruler Supreme of Norm's Anti Pedant Society (NAPS).

Number of members: 1

#3 pcx

pcx

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 10 posts

Posted 01 June 2005 - 03:24 AM

Wow, thanks for the reply. It helps alot to hear from the great NKF :)

Hmm, I think these tips are helpful (yet to try) :

- Low TUs attract reaction fire
- Use out of range sniper to shoot. (kinda always read this but never did use this)
- Smoke in between (not IN)


From some other thread, I just load up on HighExplosive for terror missions in case of cyberdiscs. (I've got laser rifles now though, still takes too many shots though)

About the corner or edge of map thing ( I'm quite lucky to normally get a more or less corner).

Do you sweep like horizontal first then sweep the next "bar" of horizontal ?
Kinda like a zig-zag (like how CRT monitor refreshes the screen).

Or diagonal ? I guess this is my main problem.


There was one mission (in a different game) my winning streak got turned around by one damn chrysallid. I was still in the purchasable weapons stage...

Attached the picture. I've never seen 5 lower right corner numbers before besides this :)

shot0000.GIF

Edited by pcx, 01 June 2005 - 03:25 AM.


#4 stewart

stewart

    Programming Department

  • [Xenocide Senior Members]
  • 10527 posts

Posted 01 June 2005 - 07:30 AM

My guide is brief: ignore them and take the hit.
Posted Image
I'm starting to like the heavy cannon more and more.

#5 Zombie

Zombie

    Colonel

  • Xenocide Creative-Text Departmen
  • 2947 posts

Posted 02 June 2005 - 11:53 PM

Better still, visit the terror site but dust-off immediately. You could only lose a maximum of 480 points by aborting. If you ignore the terror site completely, you automatically lose 1000 points. :)
The Mr. Grognard of X-COM

Zombie: Empirical data's your only man, when formulating a research plan.
A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#6 jman4117

jman4117

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 50 posts

Posted 04 June 2005 - 04:09 PM

Land, shoot up the LZ, abort if the aliens aren't Floaters. Kinda reduces the -480 penalty a bit.

#7 Selmak

Selmak

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 45 posts

Posted 04 June 2005 - 06:43 PM

Yeah, I find that the LZ makes or breaks a mission. If it looks like I can't even start to win a terror mission, I grab what I can from the corpses (theirs or mine) near the transport, and get the heck out of there.

#8 Zombie

Zombie

    Colonel

  • Xenocide Creative-Text Departmen
  • 2947 posts

Posted 04 June 2005 - 07:30 PM

Land, shoot up the LZ, abort if the aliens aren't Floaters. Kinda reduces the -480 penalty a bit.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Well, you gotta be a bit careful of civilians though. If you accidentally nail one of them, it's an automatic -50 point penalty (vs. -30 if the aliens do it themselves).

Still, it's always a good idea to assume the max penalty of -480 points and try to at least match that. Try to take out as many terrorists as possible, since they net you more points than a normal alien. Also, like Selmack mentioned, recover some artifacts and bodies. Every little bit helps.

Who knows, you might even get lucky and visit the coveted 0 civilian terror mission. Though rare, they can happen 0.3% of the time. In this case, you can blast away and not worry a bit! :)
The Mr. Grognard of X-COM

Zombie: Empirical data's your only man, when formulating a research plan.
A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#9 Tsereve

Tsereve

    Captain

  • Xenocide Recruit
  • 895 posts

Posted 04 June 2005 - 08:35 PM

It'd be real nice if you could get nukes. . .or really big Blaster Bombs. . .Terror and Alien Base missions made easy :D

Just save and reload before the Terror mission until you get a 0 citizen one :P
Justice will be dispensed by cannonade and cutlass, and all manner of remorseless pieces of metal.

Take one more step, and I swear, I will kill you so hard you will die to death.

#10 Blehm 98

Blehm 98

    Colonel

  • [Global Moderators]
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2626 posts

Posted 04 June 2005 - 09:47 PM

I've seen up to 8 boxes before

actually, remember that since there are lots of rooms, treat each building like a UFO, but remember they are destructible and have windows. remember too, that if aliens have psi, if they see you during their turn, they will remember where you are and control you. If a controlled soldier sees other uncontrolled soldiers, he will spot for the aliens and controlled soldiers count as spotten soldiers and can be controlled permanently if the aliens always control him
also remember that if an alien saw you, and tried to psi you but didn't succeed moving one space will make him lose you
Top Secret Xenocide Status report

BF2 Hackers =5SF= have busted
]sD[ Engageo <-- couldn't get him banned though, no screenshot of him ingame
]sD[Nomisser
an AK guy
The anti-logarithm of the logarithm of X plus the logarithm of Y equals X times Y, or 10^(logX + logY) = XY
Posted Image
I hate spider solitaire...

#11 Zombie

Zombie

    Colonel

  • Xenocide Creative-Text Departmen
  • 2947 posts

Posted 04 June 2005 - 10:12 PM

By "boxes", I assume you mean civilians, right? :huh?:

I think I had better post my study on civilian deployment at terror missions again. Here it is:

First, the statistical data:

MINIMUM:       0
MAXIMUM:      16
MODE:         12
MEDIAN:       11.5
AVERAGE:      11.45
RANGE:        17
StdDev:       2.76
TotalCount:   2000

And next, the distribution tallies:
# of Civies    Count     Smoothed     % of Total
     0            6           6           0.30%	
     1            3           4           0.15%	
     2            4           4           0.20%	
     3            4           6           0.20%	
     4            11          8           0.55%	
     5            10          12          0.50%	
     6            15          17          0.75%	2.65%
     7            26          85          1.30%	3.95%
     8            215         155        10.75%	
     9            224         225        11.20%	
    10            236         235        11.80%	
    11            246         247        12.30%	
    12            259         246        12.95%	
    13            232         228        11.60%	
    14            194         197         9.70%	
    15            165         170         8.25%	
    16            150         150         7.50%
For those of you who are interested in viewing a graphical result, I included "smoothed" data set. The "smoothed" column is simply the average of the counts above and below the current value (for instance, the smoothed value of 246 for 12 civies is found by averaging the counts of 246, 259 and 232). Smoothing helps to show a Gaussian data set better than just a plain count.

The data shows a definate rise from 0 to 12 civilians (the average) and a decline to 16. Overall, you should expect to see anywhere from 8 to 16 civilians at a Terror Site a whopping 96.05% of the time! Less than 1% (actually 0.85%) should you expect anywhere from 0 to 3 civilians! Do you see now why it was so tough to play a 0 civilian Terror Mission? They only happen 0.3% of the time!  :)

The lowest number of civilians that would show up with any sort of frequency would be 8 (10.75%). Those low values (below 8) only managed to happen 3.95% of the time, while the higher ones (8-12) show up a whopping 96.05%!

- Zombie
The Mr. Grognard of X-COM

Zombie: Empirical data's your only man, when formulating a research plan.
A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#12 pcx

pcx

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 10 posts

Posted 06 June 2005 - 01:35 AM

On the treat each building as a UFO idea.

The problem is the other "UFOs" nearby will see you and shoot you when you can't even see them. And using Hi-X on cyberdiscs would cause lotsa smoke. To the disadvantage of my men.
I have this terror mission on veteran I can upload if you guys want a try at it. I use it as my training of sorts, unable to get 0 or at most 1 death. Nowadays I try to avoid doing terror missions with the dustoff or shoot visible aliens method. Turnover rate not low enough to get lotsa experienced soldiers to mop up terror sites with ease.

LZ does make a big difference I suppose.

Must get off my butt and play with NKF's smoke bomb savegame.

#13 koriand'r

koriand'r

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 54 posts

Posted 28 June 2005 - 03:26 PM

First off its best to get laser weaponary asap (even if its laser pistol) as i find terror missions to eat ammo up like mad and projectile weaponary are far too weak against cyberdiscs.

Second if you do get a terror site, stall the timing by saving and seeing what time the terror site has ended, load up and at the last second if neccsary set off to that destination (used if u want a daylight mission.) Try to find out which alien race your facing by useing the save info, if your against the snake men or etherdal then its better not to go to that site. Those races are simply too powerful for me and I lose too many.

In early stage of Terror sites I only let one or two guys carry the heavy weaponary the rest have rifle, greandes and smoke greandes. The smoke greandes really I use are to cover the civillians from alien sight, to me its about spreading out and getting to the hotspot asap. Espacilly in superhuman setting civillian loss can be as high as 6 at the end of turn 4 so you have to move quick. So make sure TU's are pleanty and accuracy is good. However later in the game as you prigress you'll have weaponary to make winning easier, espacilly when you get psi.

Best way though in the end for succses in terror sites is to prevent it, they usually come near end of month so extend your patrols to increase chance of shooting one down when spotted.
UFO: Enemy and The Unknown *link below*

http://www.fanfiction.net/s/2718854/1/

#14 Zombie

Zombie

    Colonel

  • Xenocide Creative-Text Departmen
  • 2947 posts

Posted 29 June 2005 - 11:59 PM

In early stage of Terror sites I only let one or two guys carry the heavy weaponary the rest have rifle, greandes and smoke greandes. The smoke greandes really I use are to cover the civillians from alien sight, to me its about spreading out and getting to the hotspot asap. Espacilly in superhuman setting civillian loss can be as high as 6 at the end of turn 4 so you have to move quick.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Using Smoke Grenades to hide civilians from the aliens? I gotta remember that tactic! Excellent suggestion, koriand'r! :Hyper:

- Zombie
The Mr. Grognard of X-COM

Zombie: Empirical data's your only man, when formulating a research plan.
A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#15 Blehm 98

Blehm 98

    Colonel

  • [Global Moderators]
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2626 posts

Posted 30 June 2005 - 11:21 AM

Waste of smoke grenades
if the civilians aren't smart enough to hide then they deserve to get shot
Top Secret Xenocide Status report

BF2 Hackers =5SF= have busted
]sD[ Engageo <-- couldn't get him banned though, no screenshot of him ingame
]sD[Nomisser
an AK guy
The anti-logarithm of the logarithm of X plus the logarithm of Y equals X times Y, or 10^(logX + logY) = XY
Posted Image
I hate spider solitaire...

#16 Mzuz

Mzuz

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 44 posts

Posted 01 July 2005 - 09:14 AM

I wouldn't want to be a civvie under your protection >.<

Anyway, Personally for terror missions I try (key word here) to get there during the day. I mean I really really try! If I get there at night, it's usually a time to cut my losses that I haven't yet sustained, and just dust-off once I get there. (this is very beginning of game)

If I do get there during the day then I proceed to fan out as usual. I personally use 2 man teams, plus the hwp that is there with me. (usually tank) Also, I normally have laser weapons by the time of the first terror mission, but that doesn't always hold true. To me it goes like this

1. secure LZ quickly!
2. form about 4 squads of 2, the remaining 2 people are carrying rocket launchers, or other such hvy equipment
3. Fan out in a rough circle (depending on where your landing location is) of the 2 man squads, 1 is in the lead by about 5-10 spaces, and is the scouting man of the group. The other member of the group is used for firing at any aliens seen.

It's just a rough idea of how my terror missions go, but it seems to work for me. NKF's idea on keeping people on the very edges and having them shoot at aliens when they are seen, I find also works very well. Having those people in the back to do most of the shooting is extremely helpful plus it keeps them out of harms way.

#17 blue123

blue123

    Sergeant

  • Xenocide Recruit
  • 12 posts

Posted 27 December 2005 - 07:02 AM

In terror missions, I always take up defensive positions around the skyranger/lightning/avenger. First send out a couple of guys to set up a perimeter, then get the rest out to support them. Then just keep expanding the perimeter.

#18 gufu

gufu

    Captain

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 138 posts

Posted 31 December 2005 - 01:12 PM

There is no need for guide - two words:
Laser Weapons
Proud member of Commanders Tommy fan club.

#19 Guest_Azrael_*

Guest_Azrael_*
  • Guests

Posted 31 December 2005 - 01:26 PM

Not precisely helpful :P I have lost my share of terror missions armed with nothing but lasers.

#20 gufu

gufu

    Captain

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 138 posts

Posted 31 December 2005 - 04:33 PM

looks at Azrael
*sigh*
Proud member of Commanders Tommy fan club.

#21 NKF

NKF

    Commander

  • [Global Moderators]
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4798 posts

Posted 31 December 2005 - 05:31 PM

No, no, no! Four words, or rather, three including an "and" :

Laser Rifle and Strategy! ;)

Truth be told, a laser rifle, although not the strongest weapon, can get you through anything even on superhuman. But without stategy, even the strongest weapons cannot ensure success.

- NKF

Edited by NKF, 31 December 2005 - 05:37 PM.

Lord High Generalissimo Ruler Supreme of Norm's Anti Pedant Society (NAPS).

Number of members: 1

#22 Guest_Azrael_*

Guest_Azrael_*
  • Guests

Posted 31 December 2005 - 05:32 PM

Yeah, I suck at strategy in turn-based combat :(

#23 Dover

Dover

    Captain

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 194 posts

Posted 25 January 2006 - 01:09 PM

I have to go with Blehm, in that if the civies don't hide, they deserve what's coming.

What I do is immediately set up a defense around my Avenger (Fly snipers up to nearby rooftops, soldiers at chokepoints, demolition specialists covering wide open spaces).

Then I send maybe 4-6 guys in a team and sweep the rest of the map. Although I usually don't bother with multi-story buildings, as aliens usually don't climb up to the upper levels.

I've noticed civies will eventually crawl toward your defensive perimiter. By the end of the map I usually have 4 or so of the little buggers running around in front of the avenger. Perhaps this is because the game applys the same "Move toward the nearest xcom soldier" code to civies that it does to aliens (If this is true I hope NKF or Zombie can verify). Although, it's entirely possible that this is only because all the other civs are long dead...

Like everyone has said, lasers are a must. Especially if the game surprises you with a muton terror site early on...

#24 Oldblue153

Oldblue153

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 61 posts

Posted 25 January 2006 - 01:36 PM

I'm surprised that Secondary explosions wasnt added to the "how to deal with first terror scenario"...been a very long time but I'm certain gas station pumps usually attracted a cyberdisc or a couple aliens...god knows i hadda...geez that very first terror was such a slap in the face :)..Cyberdiscs TERRIFIED me

#25 Hidden Sniper

Hidden Sniper

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 11 posts

Posted 05 January 2008 - 04:43 PM

cyberdisk are like the big offensive and defense factor they should always be targeted first unless you can kill any surronding aliens due to less shooters less drama

#26 EtherImp

EtherImp

    Captain

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 189 posts

Posted 13 April 2008 - 04:58 AM

Real simple:

If you don't have laser weapons yet, expect high losses (and quite possibly a mission failure).

Once you have Laser Rifles, I do much of what is mentioned above.

-Round 1 I secure the landing zone and eliminate any immediate threats to the best of my ability.
-Round 2-3+ I start spreading about half of my troops out (WHILE MAINTAINING COVER) and keep the other half near the Skyranger.
-Form a few teams.. I find 1 recon, 2 troopers, 1 sniper, and 1 heavy weapons tends to work best..


R


T T

HW


S


Arrange your soldiers in similar fashion as illustrated above. Recon is lightly armed and has high Time Units and Reactions. Troopers have non-spectacular stats (but not necessarily bad) and are armed with Rifles/Heavy Plasma/Laser Rifles.. Recon unit spots enemy, Troopers open fire.. Alternatively, Troopers shoot down walls/trees/fences so your Sniper or Heavy Weapons guys have line of site on the target.. Once you have line of site pull your recon guy back a bit (behind cover, out of the line of fire), and unload.

Assuming you bring 10 soldiers you should have 2 5 man teams.. Or if you bring 14 you can have 2 5 man teams, and 2 2 man teams (spotter/shooter). The small 2 man teams clear buildings and upper levels while 5 man teams clear the surrounding areas.

Terror missions are difficult because there's a lot of aliens, the terror aliens themselves are typically hard to kill (Cyberdisk, Sectopods, Crystallids, etc), and because of the urban terrain. But assuming you stay organized, have good gear, and manage your time units well, Sectiods, Snakemen, Floaters, and even Mutons shouldn't be much of a problem.

Now... The ultimate nightmare is Night time Terror mission with Ethereals and Sectopods.
Overwhelmed as one would be, placed in my position.
Such a heavy burden now to be the 'one'.
Born to bear and bring to all the details of our ending,
To write it down for all the world to see.

But I forgot my pen!

#27 Zombie

Zombie

    Colonel

  • Xenocide Creative-Text Departmen
  • 2947 posts

Posted 13 April 2008 - 10:05 AM

Now... The ultimate nightmare is Night time Terror mission with Ethereals and Sectopods.

Indeed, I have visited a few Ethereal terror missions in the past and it was a nightmare every time. The biggest problem is psionic attacks by the Ethereals. My men were too busy panicking or being controlled to be very effective. It seems counterintuitive, but the answer was Blaster Bombs. Since the aliens normally start outside the buildings and the civies start inside, I just fired a few Blaster Bombs into the problem locations to take care of the Ethereals while the snipers with Laser Rifles tackled the Sectopods. :)

- Zombie
The Mr. Grognard of X-COM

Zombie: Empirical data's your only man, when formulating a research plan.
A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#28 Istrebitel

Istrebitel

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 40 posts

Posted 16 August 2010 - 04:39 AM

Have same questions so i guess better continue this than make a new topic.

Attempting to play w/o save load
Terror site, superhuman.

I play with "improved" tanks (xcomutil, they have ~100 armor, 100 movement) and i've seen a guy at youtube successfully play with 6 people +2 tanks. Tanks scout and remove cover with rockets, guys shoot.

I land at terror site. Sectoid/Cyberdisk. I am in a yard, surrounded.

HHYH
PLYH
------

Where L is landing zone square (my skyranger), P is petrol station, H are houses, Y are yards with trees. Below me is map border.

So, there are sectoids, four in the vicinity, of which three i can see (between two houses in front of the exit, to the right of the exit, and at the yard diagonal of the exit. Fourth is somewhere further to the right.
There are cyberdisks, one at the petrol station, one between petrol station and the house, hiding, one hiding behind the house to the right.

Tanks are first to exit the craft. When first tank tries to exit, he gets reaction fire of three first sectoids. He often survives, barely alive or almost full. Then he sees the cyberdisk, facing away. If i dont fire at the cyberdisk, he will retaliate my first guy who shoots it with laser rifle (and will kill him almost certainly). Then i get second tank out, who can shoot one of the aliens, then i can get my 6 guys out, who barely have action points when they are out so they can each only fire one auto shot. I got the three sectoids and one cyberdisk on my first try, then bam, grenade, 5 people dead or unconcious, game over (squaddie and a tank surrounded by cyberdisks and about 4 more sectoids coming).

Second try, i am not leaving the craft but trying to shoot with tank. In order to have a shot tank must leave the craft fully(or the wings cover line of sight) which takes reaction shots from three sectoids. Even if he survives, bams one, and gets back, next turn he is fired from outside and mostly either gone or will be gone when he attempts to pop out on the second turn. If i let both tanks out and shoot from inside with my laser guys, tanks are done for because about three-four cyberdisks are alive in the vicinity to shoot them. Next turn i have my squad left alive, but they have to get out, have reaction fire of a sectoid or two and cyberdisks, and this means at least two will die, remaining wont have firepower to down all the cyberdisks... I got extremely lucky and tanks killed all three sectoids, then they died to cyberdisk fire, then i shot cyberdisk and one incoming alien, and second and third cyberdisk got distracted by civilians that gave me some time to set up. But now i am done for because its night, and flares wont help because i am in a contained space. Aliens are shooting me from tight passageways where i cannot put a flare into, or from houses, again cant throw a flare there, and one grenade is still enough to kill more than half of my squad since i have nowhere to move (i am contained by houses, each of which is a potential threat and mostly houses an enemy).

When you play w/o saveload, do you just take off after seeing that you are surrounded by cyberdisks and sectoids on a terror mission, and is this a normal practice (overall you just loose 500 points thats not much...) or am i missing a tactic here? Should i not use tanks in terror missions, to get more personel in? Would getting out and dropping a smoke bomb prevent me from grenades? What does smoke do exactly? I mean, will it help to throw smoke grenades and exit, if enemies are standing close (in my night sight range)

#29 NKF

NKF

    Commander

  • [Global Moderators]
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4798 posts

Posted 16 August 2010 - 05:47 AM

Disembarking from the ship is probably the biggest trial at night terror sites.

Smoke helps reduce the sight of the aliens by a few tiles. The smoke clouds provide the best protection during the the first 1 - 3 turns after it has exploded when it is dense, after that the smoke spread but start to thin, allowing anyone to see 1 tile further into the cloud for each turn that passes. The problem is that it can also reduce your vision, however, when used right, the smoke grenade is a great way to cover your soldiers sufficiently that they are able to just get out of the Skyranger and space them out so that they aren't targets for grenades. Just remember that closer aliens may not be effected by the smoke cloud too much but those further away will have a much harder time spotting you.

Smoke grenades do enforce the good habit of waiting at least one turn before you deploy. The aliens are always at full TUs on the first turn, and that's when their reaction fire is most lethal. It's still bad after the first turn, but nowhere near as bad as when they're at full TU's!

The only problem I can see is that you've got two tanks. It's possible to throw a grenade over one tank but not two, without sacrificing one.Until you get the Avenger, more practical to use one tank on the Skyranger.

As for flares, you can throw flares on top of buildings and achieve the same effect. But if you're in the Skyranger then there's no room to throw them except forward out the ramp. If there are any aliens lurking just beyond the ramp in darkness, it could help pick them out. It's better to walk into a lit area than to walk into a dark one.

Do you have any motion scanners? There's no way to tell if it's an alien or civilian, but the motion scanner is often a good way to check your immediate area after waiting a turn or two to make sure that there aren't any aliens just beside the ramp. If there are, a rocket or grenade can be fired beside the ramp to clear it before you disembark.

In the end, retreating is certainly an option. If possible, try to kill any aliens that you can confidently defeat before hitting the dust of button. It won't save the terror site, but every little bit helps.

- NKF
Lord High Generalissimo Ruler Supreme of Norm's Anti Pedant Society (NAPS).

Number of members: 1

#30 Istrebitel

Istrebitel

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 40 posts

Posted 16 August 2010 - 06:42 AM

In other words, if i am on second alien turn getting an alien grenade thrown inside my craft (which means about 4 of my people die), the smoke would prevent that? Do aliens throw grenades into the smoke if they know i'm there? I've read ufopaedia.org on smoke, but still that does not explain how exactly does the smoke work...

Yes i use scanners but in this case they wouldnt help me much. Problem is that i just lack firepower to kill that much of the enemies. And if i dont get out, i have a cyberdisk or two by my exit ramp by the end of turn one or two who are firing inside the craft killing those staying closer to the ramp (and a grenade inside my craft by the end of turn two) (and my idiots reacting-shoot each other in the backs). If i do get out, i get a grenade at turn one from beyond my sight range...

Yes i guess having one tank would give me more chances. I'd consider that. Yet again, problem is i would have a stack of troops at the ramp and a sectoid somewhere around (in a buiding) beyond sight range beyond possibility to be killed who will throw a grenade at me and thats a fail.

It is just before, i mostly got spawned in terror sites where aliens are busy with killing civilians, and i am adjacent to a highway or a field. This way i get out, reaction fire goes into my tank, and that is it, everybody who is around is accounted for! (I mean, every alien around to throw a grenade has already shot my tank so i know how many to expect. Then i shoot everything that i see with my guys, and at first enemy turn the palce is clear. Every alien close to my location has a civilian to shoot that is what he does. By turn two i get to peak more with my tank and spread out my troops, now grenades are not that of a problem, and more aliens are dead.

But now i got this, stuck between buildings, aliens got insane cover advantage and i am stacked in the open, welcome alien grenade!

How would you determine that you must retreat asap?

Because for me, this mission didnt seem any different from usual night sectoid terrors. I got out, got shot alot, tank survived. I see three aliens. I get further and i see a cyberdisc. Since he doesnt shoot me, i know he's facing away so i shoot it to use his reaction fire. He kils the tank (who already survived three alien's fire, thats enough). Another tank gets out and lets people get out. People kill two sectoids and a cyberdisk. Third dies to the tank. Now, it looks great! Except the first alien turn, grenade, bam, i have one person and tank remaining. what could i do to anticipate that grenade? Only option is not to get out at all, but then, i would have cyberdisks around my exit by next turn.

Before, about three or more terrors (two night) into this no-save-load game (all sectoid/cyberdisk ffs) i'm playing, it was usually the same ~3 aliens and ~1 cyberdisk greeting party and i didnt have to shoot rockets at all! Three people took care of aliens, three took care of cyberdisks, tanks were positioned further away to provoke fire of any aliens i dont see yet. By my turn two i have at most 1 person dead, i throw flares around and now i can see like in daylight (if it isnt daylight already =), i continue to use tanks as spotters and soldiers, positioned at the map edge, further away as possible from any cover alien might be behind, snipe with autoshots. And then aliens come and get shot. Even if by turn two there were aliens in the vicinity, they just shot the civilians.

I mean, how do i know that i should retreat if i can only know that when i am already ambushed with the grenade... Grenade seems to be the biggest problem here. And its so easy to kill most of my people with just one. Just one and its done.

Maybe that smoke really helps alot, i'll try to find a game editor to edit one into my soldier's equipment just to see if it would prevent the grenades...

#31 NKF

NKF

    Commander

  • [Global Moderators]
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4798 posts

Posted 18 August 2010 - 01:32 AM

In other words, if i am on second alien turn getting an alien grenade thrown inside my craft (which means about 4 of my people die), the smoke would prevent that? Do aliens throw grenades into the smoke if they know i'm there? I've read ufopaedia.org on smoke, but still that does not explain how exactly does the smoke work...


The aliens cannot attack your units if they cannot see your units, so the aliens can only throw a grenade into the Skyranger if they are close enough to visually see your soldiers. This means that if you do choose to wait in the Skranger for a few turns, make absolutely sure that you are able to see the full length out of the back of the Skyranger. Aliens always see 20 tiles away at day or night. X-COM soldiers can only see 20 tiles during the day, but this is reduced at night unless, so you have to make up for it with some flares or incendiary rounds.

How smoke works: Smoke works by reducing the maximum visible range of any unit that is looking in the direction of a smoke cloud. The denser the cloud, the more visibility is reduced. The longer you wait, the weaker the clouds get. That's why smoke clouds are strongest within the first 3 turns.

It works best when the smoke is between you and the aliens. If the cloud is on the alien or your unit is standing inside the smoke cloud, then it won't be able to hide you as much. It's still far better than trying to exit without a smoke screen.

Unfortunately dropping a smoke grenade by the ramp means that any soldiers going down the ramp will actually be walking into the middle of the cloud, meaning they're not going to be as well protected if they were outside of the cloud. This makes is it a good idea to throw the grenade a little further, or off to the side a bit in the direction you anticipate will have the greatest enemies.

Yes i guess having one tank would give me more chances. I'd consider that. Yet again, problem is i would have a stack of troops at the ramp and a sectoid somewhere around (in a buiding) beyond sight range beyond possibility to be killed who will throw a grenade at me and thats a fail.


I don't usually recommend this unless you've all your soldiers are wearing some sort of armour to filter the smoke, but but you might actually want to consider dropping a smoke grenade on the equipment pile as well as the base of the ramp. This should offer a bit of extra protection to those inside the Skyranger.

How would you determine that you must retreat asap?


You have to use your own experience, common sense and judgment for that. You cannot anticipate something bad happening like a grenade being thrown into the Skyranger (which is actually not as common as a blaster bomb into the Skyranger) though there are ways to mitigate it with patience and the tools you have available. For example if you arrive at a mission and there are enemies that you are not prepared to fight at this stage (like ethereals when you don't know your Psi levels or have anything strong enough to defeat the sectopods), then you'd choose to abort.

I mean, how do i know that i should retreat if i can only know that when i am already ambushed with the grenade... Grenade seems to be the biggest problem here. And its so easy to kill most of my people with just one. Just one and its done.


You can't anticipate grenades but you can reduce the damage they will cause. Aliens generally like to throw them at clusters of soldiers, so the only thing I can recommend is that you deploy only a few soldiers at a time and have them move out before deploying the next few soldiers. Basically deploy your squad over several turns rather than rush 4 or more out at a time. The key here is stay as far apart from each other as possible.

Also like I mentioned above, those that are in the Skyranger should be able to see the full length out of the back of the Skyranger to catch any of the approaching aliens. If possible, those closest to the ramp should be able to react against them as well. To prevent those behind from accidentally reacting - have turn away from the ramp.

By the way, do you still have a copy of the savegame at this time? It sounds interesting enough that I'd actually like to give it a try myself.

- NKF

Edited by NKF, 18 August 2010 - 01:43 AM.

Lord High Generalissimo Ruler Supreme of Norm's Anti Pedant Society (NAPS).

Number of members: 1

#32 Istrebitel

Istrebitel

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 40 posts

Posted 18 August 2010 - 10:20 AM

Oh,sorry :( No, i rewrote it with new save in a time...

Well. thanks, now i checked and smoke grenades indeed feel mandatory at every time i exit the craft. Problem is i cannot throw the grenade over one tank anyway. I have to take the tank out, otherwise its "cannot throw there".... Yet tank rarely dies on its first sortie, and it only needs to move two steps, then back into the craft.

Now after some playing, the smoke is indeed IMBA. Its like, i dont know, really mandatory. If you dont, you just have a chance of "crit" - unspotted alien or faraway alien will throw a grenade at your people and they die. And if you play fair - no reloading after mistakes - you cannot afford that.

Yet all this does not matter now because i can no longer play :*( Terrible buggs happen for my apparently "clean install" (http://www.xcomufo.c...47) and without ufo extender i dont seem to be able to run my CE UFO, even with fixes xcomutils suggest it still does not run (most i got out of it is it ran but geoscape had pallete problems and tactical would crash...)

#33 NKF

NKF

    Commander

  • [Global Moderators]
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4798 posts

Posted 18 August 2010 - 01:40 PM

You can throw over the tank, but not at the usual spot you'd throw if you did not have the tank. Try kneeling or pick a spot a little further away from the bottom of the ramp.

- NKF
Lord High Generalissimo Ruler Supreme of Norm's Anti Pedant Society (NAPS).

Number of members: 1

#34 Istrebitel

Istrebitel

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 40 posts

Posted 19 August 2010 - 01:59 AM

On topic of terror:

I'm watching LP of Antarctic Superhero Challenge by spiritualguru
http://www.youtube.c...U...&playnext=1

He is playing on superhuman (as am i) w/o saveload. He just has two tanks and six people, and he doesnt use smokes. He just goes out and shoots. Even on terrors.
Is he insanely lucky, or what? In about same situaton (~4 sectoids around the landing zone and ~3 cyberdisks) he gets out tanks, shoots some sectoids, get out some people, and then sectoids and cyberdisks just ignore him, shooting some civilians, neither they attempt a grenade.
()

In one attempt he got entire team out and didnt manage to shoot all floaters, but that floater who saw all those people didnt throw a grenade, but rather walked away, neither did other floaters throw a grenade (at 6 ppl staked around exit ramp of the skyranger).
( about 6:30 into the video)


Off topic:

Erm, i have 1 tank + 10 troopers layout in skyranger. Nobody of the first two peopel staying behind the tank can throw grenade anywhere forward (at any square tank is occupying or any square of the ramp).

RR
RR
RR
TT
TT
12
34
56
78
90

If this is the skyranger, R is ramp, T is tank and 1-0 are soldiers, neiter 1 nor 2 can throw a smoke at T or R.

Could you please tell me who exactly can do it and how? I'm clueless :( It seems to be a bug or a misunderstanding on my part :(

Edited by Istrebitel, 19 August 2010 - 02:11 AM.


#35 NKF

NKF

    Commander

  • [Global Moderators]
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4798 posts

Posted 19 August 2010 - 06:09 AM

As with anything in this game, luck is a very-very big part of it.

You can actually throw into T, but not R. Throw at the ground past R. If you can't throw, keep extending the distance until you can.

- NKF
Lord High Generalissimo Ruler Supreme of Norm's Anti Pedant Society (NAPS).

Number of members: 1

#36 Istrebitel

Istrebitel

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 40 posts

Posted 20 August 2010 - 12:45 AM

By the way, yesterday i seem to have discovered the true power of the smoke grenades:

When aliens "Push", "Attack", "Advance", they move forward towards location they last saw your soldier (or they just know every location, maybe, in strategies such cheating is often the case to make a hard computer opponent). They reserve some TU always for reaction shooting (except if they already attacked at their turn, in which case they always leave enough TU's to duck into cover).

This is where "Smoke weakens every turn" comes into place. If your soldiers are inside the smoke cloud, and alien is outside, at his turn, he moves towards you, does not see you, ends his turn. On your turn, smoke cloud weakens, and you can see him now! Or, if you dont, you can move some steps forward, spot him, shoot with other guys, move back. In any case, since you can always move your soldier forth and back, aliens cannot "exploit" this - and i belive, smoke cloud only weakens after the turn ends, this means, after alien turn ends, since X-com goes first.
If smoke cloud only weakens after alien's turn end, then smoke anywhere on the map is in the favor of X-Com, always. If not, then anyway, since aliens do not do the maneuver of going BACK after going forwards unless they have spotted you and fired, this means you will in most cases get the first shot at them and from behind their sight distance.

Yesterday took a Superhuman Floater Battleship at Night with 8 rookies with laser rifles, no armor and no tanks (didnt use grenades either), no save/load and no casualties (well, one soldier was once shot at, got hit, but got lucky, only took half his hp). That shot was at one of my reaction fire parties, after which i thrown a smoke grenade and since then, nobody ever got shot (i always had first strike)

Also, it seems that the one standing in smoke generally sees first. I suppose this might be because, if alien outside the smoke is looking at soldier inside, the smoke tile that soldier stands in counts when alien's los is checked, but not when xcom soldier's los is checked. I mean, if x-com soldier is three smoke tiles deep into the cloud, then alien is looking through four smoke tiles (three + last at which soldier stands) while soldier is looking through only three (because his vision check starts at the tile adjacent to him). That might be also another advantage of staying inside smoke.

#37 SaintD

SaintD

    Captain

  • Xenocide Recruit
  • 195 posts

Posted 16 November 2010 - 05:00 PM

For the first few terror mission I love having at least 5 missile launchers. Just level the the place. Bring a few Incendiary rounds for night. If I have them, I give the rocket guys laser pistols, a launcher and two heavy rockets with a pile in reserve in the ranger. First guy off the bus fires his two missiles at the nearest cover, the switches to a scout role with the laser pistol.

Later in the game if I have points and money coming in reliably, I often just land and dust off right away if things don't look ideal. Winning battles is great, but terror missions can only truly be won in the air. Don't get sucked into a disasterous mission that might put the war effort in jeopardy. Doubly so if you only have the one Sky Ranger! Don't risk it in dicey battles.

#38 Admiral Harkov

Admiral Harkov

    Captain

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 113 posts

Posted 01 January 2011 - 07:15 AM

I tend to do fine with terror missions (as long there's no chryssalids), even in superhuman with sectoids+cyberdisks with just a couple of laser pistols, one HWP rocket one guy with three small rockets and one with an autocannon.

My trick is simply go slow, very slow. First tank leaves and does a look out of the immediate environment, then there's a few options:

A) The tank sees no aliens. Start deploying the soldiers, by pairs. First two move to a rear landing gear each, standing so the gear is between them and the more likely route of approach by aliens, haven't had many times use of it, but the gears have stopped a few shots meant for my soldiers. Next turn, the tank advances further up to act as an advanced watch scout, the two guys from the rear gears go to the front gears and two more leave the skyranger to get in the rear, those inside move to the edge. Next those in the front gear move to the closest obstacle and the other two in the rear move to the front giving space for the next ones. Naturally, in some maps the soldiers move directly from rear gears to closest obstacle when going to the forward gears doesn't make sense.

B) The tank sees aliens. This opens two choices:

B.1) Alien is facing exit and fear that a soldier could get shot by reaction fire. I let the tank kill it and then continue as usual, moving the tank more, for scouting.

B.2) Alien is not facing exit and I am confident of no reaction fire, I make one of the two front soliders shoot at it. If he can do from inside the skyranger he stays inside.

Once the pairs are out, then they start to move, slowly from obstacle to nearest next obstacle, always making sure there's enough left for reaction fire and ducking, and the minimum force for any given route is two pairs. I never sent a pair of soldiers alone, and hence you can imagine no way in heck I'm letting a single soldier alone. Only way of that happening is if his three route companions are killed. And I always do so that any place needing watch is being in the LOS of at least two of them and also that no two have the same angle to shoot at each place, that means no to in a straight line parallel to the direction of their movement.

Of course, there's still the terror mission that ends with too many losses, but generally I tend to not lose more than two soldiers, three if I've done some stupid move (there are times I can't hold myself from thinking that taking a risk may be worth and end losing the soldier having achieved nothing with that move).

#39 chiasaur11

chiasaur11

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 15 posts

Posted 06 March 2011 - 01:30 AM

Speed has virtues, though. Only way to save a decent number of civilians and that.

Better, if you break the main enemy lines fast, it turns into a nice clean mop-up.

#40 QuixotesGhost

QuixotesGhost

    Squaddie

  • Forum Members
  • PipPip
  • 7 posts

Posted 11 July 2012 - 01:37 AM

Use civilians to spot aliens. They make good bait. The aliens reveal their positions by firing at them and waste TUs that would otherwise be spent putting holes in your guys. If you see dead civs, it means an alien is the area. Conversely, if you see live civs, it means the area is most likely safe. This will give you a better idea what buildings can be safely ignored and which ones need to be leveled with to the ground with rockets and high-ex.

#41 Pherdnut

Pherdnut

    Captain

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 245 posts

Posted 14 November 2012 - 09:10 AM

Old thread but early Sectoid Terror missions can be the hardest missions in the game.

The more TUs you've expended, the more likely reaction fire is to occur I believe. Sometimes just a twitch is all it takes with cyberdiscs but don't turn a corner until you've stopped and waited a turn basically. When a soldier spots a cyberdisc, don't move him until squad mates outside of the cyberdisc's sight can grenade/missile, snipe the thing to death or you run out of options. If the soldier has a chance at killing it, it's better to have him try with no time units remaining if he succeeds than to attempt to move him to cover, which is certain death without armor. If you don't have at least lasers, I wouldn't bother with rifles/pistols except as a last resort.

Explosives tend to kill cyberdiscs without the bonus explosion which is larger/deadlier than most explosive attacks you yourself have access to in the early game. Soldier too close? Try to missile/heavy-explosive it with a blast radius that doesn't hit the soldier. Heavy explosives are a good equalizer for the discs if you don't even have lasers but it takes a strong soldier to throw them from cover.

Use those flare light thingies. I'm pretty sure the aliens see better in the dark than humans do. Use prox grenades on corners you're expecting sectoids to turn or simply want covered.

Those occasional first month sectoid terror missions can be brutal but they can also be a massive boon if you can manage to bag a leader (you'll know him as the one mind-controlling/panicking your men). You might lose all but 2 of your team getting him, but early psionics is a game changer.

#42 Pherdnut

Pherdnut

    Captain

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 245 posts

Posted 14 November 2012 - 09:18 AM

Yesterday took a Superhuman Floater Battleship at Night with 8 rookies with laser rifles, no armor and no tanks (didnt use grenades either), no save/load and no casualties (well, one soldier was once shot at, got hit, but got lucky, only took half his hp). That shot was at one of my reaction fire parties, after which i thrown a smoke grenade and since then, nobody ever got shot (i always had first strike)


Try an all-human-tech game, researching only what you start out being able to research and the prereqs for the Avenger to get to Cydonia. A couple guys with heavy lasers (anti-armor) and LRs isn't as insanely hard as it sounds.

#43 Sorrow

Sorrow

    Captain

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 283 posts

Posted 14 November 2012 - 06:05 PM

How about run training 'simulations' on a terror site for a bit of practice? i.e. save a game just as a terror site appears and before you launch the Skyranger. Then you can keep launching a mission against the terror site until you get the hang of it. Use separate save slots so that you can save different equipment configurations that you might like to try out. If you keep at it, you'll eventually get the hang of it - I do it all the time after I haven't played the game in a while just to get back up to speed.


It would be cool if it would be possible to implement actual simulated missions with non-lethal weapons.

#44 kevL's

kevL's

    Sergeant

  • Forum Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27 posts

Posted 17 November 2012 - 01:48 PM

Exiting the Ranger

if I spot an alien i usually don't attempt taking it out: it's armed with full TU's! If it's looking in, don't twitch; carefully prime a smoke and drop it at your feet. That won't prompt alien reactions. End turn and it will probably come wandering up for a better view into the Ranger. Now the tables are turned: your guys have full TU's and it doesn't


( edit: ironically a wandering ethereal w/ grenade just proved me wrong about that )

Edited by kevL's, 18 November 2012 - 07:48 AM.